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lincoln, nebraska. a man shot while in his apartment building after two armed men burst in. atlanta, georgia. a 14-year-old student shot in the head at price middle school this afternoon, one person in police custody. and then, of course, there's the city of chicago. more people killed there last year than american troops killed in afghanistan. more than 40 gun murders so far just this year, and today they announced a new strategy. nbc's kevin tibbles starts us off from there tonight. good evening. >> brian, 2013 is barely a month old and already 42 murders in the city of chicago. the latest has galvanized this city into taking action. >> no one gets a pass. >> reporter: today, chicago city officials went on the offensive. taking aim at gun violence by calling for background checks on gun buyers. >> loss of any child, in any community, in this city, is a loss to the entire city. reporter: moving 200 more officers from behind their desks
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to the streets. >> if i have to put a policeman here, 24 hours a day, 7 days a week, 365, we're going to make a point that this territory belongs to the community. >> i'm hadiya, year 2015. >> reporter: the victims have names and families. 15-year-old honor student, hadiya pendelton, has become the latest face of violence in this city. in sixth grade, she took part in an anti gang video. >> your job is to say no to gangs and yes to a great future. >> reporter: despite bylaws that prohibit gunshots within city limits, more than any other city in america, chicago appears to be awash in guns. more than 7,400 seized by police last year, almost 600 since january 1st. >> chicago certainly has strict gun control laws. but the difficulty is that outlying areas outside of chicago and in other states, neighboring illinois, don't have strict gun control laws, and the guns easily flow into chicago because of that. >> we lost our son, benjamin.
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>> reporter: in newtown, connecticut, they continue the push for new gun legislation nationwide. >> the liberty of any person to own a military-style assault weapon and a high-capacity magazine and keep them in their home is second to the right of my son to his life. >> reporter: others suggested beefing up gun laws can't stop all the violence. >> either the size of the magazine, nor the style of the rifle, will affect the actions of evil. those wishing to do harm to those wishing to do good will never be swayed by the laws of man. >> reporter: and chicago police say those extra 200 officers will start hitting the streets as early as saturday. brian? >> kevin tibbles, starting us off tonight from chicago. kevin, thank you. now to a dramatic and contentious day of testimony for the man the president wants to run the pentagon. former republican senator and decorated vietnam combat
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veteran, chuck hagel, already under fire before today. he got a rough treatment at today's hearing. kelly o'donnell is on the hill tonight with details. kelly, good evening. >> reporter: good evening, brian. tough questions were expected, but the real surprise today came in how chuck hagel handled the all-day scrutiny. at times appearing unprepared or off his game. and that's after hagel had dozens of personal meetings with senators, trying to win their support to become the next secretary of defense. >> right up the stairs, sir. >> reporter: chuck hagel would break new ground as the first enlisted man, first vietnam veteran, to run the pentagon. and first cabinet nominee to get the super pac treatment. tv ads against his confirmation. >> chuck hagel is not a responsible option. >> reporter: but it was hagel's former colleagues and even friends who waged a coordinated attack today on hagel's judgment. john mccain seized on hagel's vocal opposition to the surge of troops in iraq in 2007. >> the question, senator hagel, the question is, were you right
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or wrong. that's a pretty straightforward question. >> well, i'm not going to give you a yes or no answer. >> reporter: hagel knew he who damage control to do. >> i should have used another term, and i'm sorry. >> reporter: over his 2008 comments related to israel that a, quote, jewish lobby intimidates a lot of people in congress. >> name one person, in your opinion, who is intimidated by the israeli lobby in the united states senate. >> well, first -- >> name one. >> i don't know. >> reporter: outside the hearing, senators of both parties were critical. >> i'm going to be candid. i think that chuck hagel is much more comfortable asking questions than answering them. >> i don't think it's going very well. >> reporter: hagel was repeatedly pressed by both democrats and republicans to make clear his commitment to israel's security. >> i strongly support israel. >> reporter: and clarify his stand on iran. hagel had voted against declaring iran's revolutionary guard a terror organization.
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and today, incorrectly referred to the u.s. policy on iran and nuclear weapons as containment. >> by the way, i've just been handed a note that i misspoke. >> reporter: hagel said he fully backs the president's position that iran cannot be allowed to get nuclear weapons and says the u.s. should talk to iran. >> engagement is not appeasement. engagement is not surrender. >> reporter: and tonight administration officials tell me that while this was not a perfect performance, they have no indication that democrats have turned against hagel. no sign that his confirmation is in trouble. brian? >> kelly o'donnell on the hill for us tonight. kelly, thanks. the senate also gave final approval today to a measure that would at least put off the debate over raising the debt ceiling. this measure suspends the government's borrowing limit to may 19th. the national debt will be pushing $17 trillion. in other words, it's really washington's version of kicking the can down the road. the president is expected to sign this bill immediately. now to the economy and the financial markets.
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stocks fell a bit today with all three major indexes modestly lower. but for the month, the dow was up almost 6%, the best since january in '94. nasdaq gained 4%, s&p just over 6. its best january since '97. what is the market surge trying to tell us when mixed in with some bad news out there, as well? and on the eve of another big jobs report? our report from nbc's tom costello. >> reporter: 25-year-old kory wilson can tell you, it's not easy looking for a job. she has applied for 200 since earning a master's degree in public relations last may. >> being a post graduate, either i'm overqualified or i'm underqualified. >> she is looking for work, but the economy seemingly poised to either take off or take a stumble. today new applications brought employment benefits jumped by 38,000. but they hit five-year lows the previous two weeks. personal income and spending both grew in december.
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the housing market seems to be improving, and while the economy actually shrank in the fourth quarter, many blame government spending cuts and the fiscal cliff stalemate. >> we have removed the financial panic and now we're waiting to kind of take a look at the dust and see how it's settled and see how much destruction there's really been. >> reporter: through it all, wall street has been on a tear. up nearly 6% this month. meanwhile, on main street -- >> i'm filling up once a week so $50 a week, $200 a month. >> gas prices are headed north. >> i need a new car. it's breaking me. it's ridiculous. >> reporter: the national average is now $3.42 a gallon, up ten cents in just a week and about where it was a year ago. california, the great lakes and the east coast are paying the most. analysts blame refinery slowdowns. >> this is one of the quickest, largest increases we have seen for this time of year. that we have ever seen. >> reporter: all of this sets the stage for tomorrow's jobs report and one of the first real reads on the state of the
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economy in 2013. tom costello, nbc news, washington. we've been reporting on the warnings and seeing the examples over and over. state-sponsored computer hacking of american companies by china. well, tonight it's the news media itself under siege, including some very big names. our report from nbc's pete williams. >> reporter: the "new york times" says hackers have been attacking its computer system for the past four months. even managing to get passwords for individual reporters. the paper says its own security experts and the fbi traced the intrusions to hackers in china who it says were employing techniques associated in the past with hackers from the chinese military. another newspaper, "the wall street journal" says it too was hit by chinese hackers who apparently wanted to monitor its china reporting. no attempt, the journal says, to steal customer data. in beijing, any suggestion that the chinese were involved, quote, irresponsible. but "the times" says the hack attack coincided with a series
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of stories it posted on its website, which reported that relatives of china's prime minister had amassed a fortune worth several billion dollars through business deals. >> we first noticed the unusual activity on our network shortly after we published our article about the outgoing chinese ruling family. >> reporter: security experts and the fbi say china has been targeting news organizations in the u.s. and overseas for the past few years. one main goal, they say, has been to try to identify the sources of news leaks within the chinese government. it's also part of a broader pattern of hacking and related attacks on banks and other businesses. security experts say there's no such thing as a fool-proof defense. >> there really isn't. i mean, the only computers these days that are safe in the chinese government hackers are computers that are turned off, unplugged and thrown in the back seat of your car. >> reporter: as for the "new york times," the paper says the latest hack attack is over, but says it fully expects china to
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try again. pete williams, nbc news, washington. we devoted a lot of time here this week to the wild temperature extremes in our country, rising and falling, 50 degrees or more. and now we are paying the price in terms of violent weather. lots of damage, lots of accidents. our report tonight on all of it from weather channel meteorologist julie martin. >> reporter: in michigan this morning, blinding snow caused a deadly chain-reaction accident nearly a mile long on i-75 near detroit. at least three people were killed and several injured. >> there was a whiteout condition and once the first crash happened, other people couldn't see the -- actually see out from the hood of their vehicle. >> reporter: hours later, another in michigan and a dozen vehicle pile-up in indiana. in maryland, water rescues caught on tape. firefighters forced to pull people from their cars as water quickly trapped them. 6 inches of rain in just a few
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hours forced laurel officials to evacuate several hundred people and open the pawtuxet river dam gates. one person died. damaging winds across the northeast mangled power lines and have left 100,000 people without power. this tree was no match for the punishing winds. you can see, it is completely upended. trees crashed into houses in connecticut. >> it was loud. when it hit the house and broke the glass it was pretty loud. >> reporter: police cruisers crushed. >> this is the same picture we see -- >> reporter: today, the view from above the incredible tornado damage in adairsville, georgia. survivors surrounded by mounds of debris. the top of the town's steel water tank torn open like a sardine can. >> it all happened in maybe five seconds. i mean, it was just boom. >> reporter: on the ground assessing the strength of the tornado, the national weather service's keith steelman. >> this structure alone would be in the ef-3 range. so what we'll do is look at
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others and come up with a final rating. >> reporter: and here in adairsville, georgia tonight, initial estimates point to a tornado tracking some 24 1/2 miles with winds in excess of 160, all causing damage estimated at around $75 million. brian? >> a wild night in these parts, as well. julie martin in georgia for us. julie, thanks. and still ahead, as we continue on a thursday evening, if you're among those of us who had no chance of getting into an ivy league school, well, there's good news. there's a way to get in now on the ground floor. and later, beyonce unleashes a stunner, even before the super bowl gets under way and sends a very distinct message to her critics. ♪
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we are back now as promised with what could be the key to higher education and perhaps even brilliance for a lot of folks who don't necessarily have the time or money for college.
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say nothing of an ivy league school. online learning is hardly new. it's been around for a long time. but open access to classes at some of this nation's most prestigious institutions is new. and people of all kinds and all ages are signing on. our report from our chief education correspondent, rehema ellis. >> reporter: the college classroom is changing. courses from some of the world's most elite universities are now available to anyone for free. at a furious pace, schools are participating with start-up companies like coursera to deliver online courses. or m.o.o.k.s. >> much faster than any of us were expecting. we reached our first 1 million users faster than facebook. >> reporter: physics, poetry, astronomy, even guitar, all just a click away. university of virginia retooled his modern history course for this semester's online debut. the class usually open to 120 students saw enrollment soar.
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>> 42,000 students around the world. >> reporter: to put it in perspective, in order to reach the same number of students, this professor would have to teach his course here at the university of virginia for 350 years. since 2011, some 2.5 million students from hundreds of countries have signed on, even though m.o.o.k.s are not offered for credit and completion rates are low, some educators say the potential exists to revolutionize higher learning. 38-year-old dawn smith was looking to change careers. >> i wanted to go into health care communications. but i needed some textbook knowledge. and i felt that in order to be taken seriously as a candidate, i needed to show that i was doing something proactive. >> reporter: there are concerns, however, about measuring student progress. the lack of student-professor interaction, even the sustainability of m.o.o.k.s. >> imagine taking a university and removing all of the really fun stuff and all you're left with is me talking to you through a camera.
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that's not that good for anybody. >> reporter: still, universities are experimenting with new ways to expand learning and potentially revenue, as well. rehema ellis, nbc news, charlottesville, virginia. we are back in a moment with tonight's big prime time event. a big fight over beer and a big message from one of our critics.
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so this is goodbye. goodbye to liz and jack and kenneth and all our friends at tgs. tonight's "30 rock" episode is the series finale, the end, after seven seasons and a boat load of emmys. with the end of the series, creator tina fey faces a somewhat dark and uncertain future. just kidding. the series has only cemented her status among the leading producers and comedy performers in a generation. alec baldwin, not so much. our very best to the cast and crew of the only comedy ever named after our humble building. prior to what may be the
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largest single day of the year for beer consumption, super bowl sunday, the u.s. justice department is moving to block a big beer merger. it would combine the king, the budweiser family, owned by a company called imbev with corona, the largest selling import. there are worries it would give one company too much market share, perhaps less competition and higher prices. we reported an item here last night that appeared in the "new york times", among other places. the result of an exhaustive new study containing overwhelming evidence that cats are bird murderers. the numbers are astounding. cats, they say, kill as many as 3.7 billion birds per year in just the united states. well, as you might imagine, we heard from some viewers. magoo of wickford, rhode island sent us this, quote, i am not a bird murderer, no matter what brian williams says on nbc news. don't judge me.
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end of quote. the bird community has so far been silent, perhaps because their ranks have been decimated. and back to dog news. the american kennel club says the labrador retriever is the most popular dog in america for the 22nd straight year, because they're kind, smart, good sniffers and family-friendly. german shepherds, a solid number two. golden retrievers have edged out beagles for third place. when we come back, beyonce faces the music and delivers a stunner. ♪ s
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in new orleans today, beyonce walked into a room full of news media assembled to cover the super bowl where she will perform. beyonce had something to answer for, dating back to inauguration day, and she had a point to make. and she made it today, loud and clear. and those who watched it on live television knew they were seeing something special. our report tonight from nbc's chris jansing. ♪ o say, can you see >> reporter: it was high drama worthy of a superstar, beyonce, answering critics of her inauguration performance.
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in her trademark powerful voice, she hit every note ack a capella. ♪ and the rockets' red glare >> reporter: nine days after the inauguration, she admitted that without rehearsal with the orchestra, the cold weather and no proper sound check, she made a decision. >> i am a perfectionist. i decided to sing along with my prerecorded track, which is very common in the music industry. and i'm very proud of my performance. >> reporter: in fact, experts say at global tv events, singing to prerecorded vocals is common. >> mistakes are very high for live television. the circumstances are often complicated and not the usual way that people perform. >> reporter: still, the postinaugural criticism. it was fast and furious, adding to the super bowl pressure. more than 100 million people are expected to watch, including the hometown crowd. >> it's where my family is from,
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new iberia, louisiana, so it really makes me emotional to have a halftime performance. and when i got into the super dome, i took my shoes off and i planted my feet into the ground, and i just ran. >> reporter: with an indoor venue and lots of rehearsal time in new orleans, beyonce promises to put on quite a show. >> i will absolutely be singing loud. this is what i was born to do. what i was born for. >> reporter: if fans had any doubt about that, she faced the music. ♪ the brave >> any questions? >> reporter: chris jansing, nbc news, new york. that's our broadcast on a thursday night. thank you for being here with us. i'm brian williams. we hope to see you right back here tomorrow evening. good night. right now at 6:00, a run on guns in one south bay city.
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what could be behind the sales spike. >> also the 49ers controversy. a key player is now apologizing for anti-gay remarks. we'll have his new comments. >> and dozens fall sick after an outbreak that force add east bay deli to close its doors. good evening. thank you for joining us. i'm jessica aguirre. >> i'm raj that thai. several south bay neighborhoods are in the dark tonight all because of broken light fixtures but repairing them will take more than just replacing a bulb. scott budman has the new details and joins us in san jose with the story. what's happening in these neighborhoods? >> good evening, raj. it's been a little more than three weeks since these lights have been turned on. which means even if it's a fairly early hour of the evening it's too dark to play at the nearby park and some neighbors are concerned about going out at night. >> we're on the move.
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>> troy phillips is running a fitness clinic at a san jose park but he has to get his routine in faster these days because the lights near the park and through his entire neighborhood don't work. they haven't for a month. >> and i've e-mailed them, called them, gotten some responses but still no lights. >> it's inconvenient. troy says it's making some people who live here nervous. >> so people still want to go out and walk around, take their kids out. but you can't because there's no lights. rosemary garden park has one light now. >> right now the thieves are stealing the copper wire at a rate faster than we can fix it. >> officials say it's more than just replacing a light bulb because of the hot market for stolen copper, 142 local light fixtures are now broken. >> it takes us many days to make those repairs. and we've got a backlog of several months to make those repairs. so we just need more resources. we're trying to do what we can

NBC Nightly News
NBC January 31, 2013 5:30pm-6:00pm PST

News/Business. (2013) New. (CC) (Stereo)

TOPIC FREQUENCY Hagel 10, Chicago 8, China 6, Chuck Hagel 5, Georgia 4, Virginia 3, Nbc News 3, Washington 3, Israel 3, Kelly O'donnell 2, Pete Williams 2, Julie Martin 2, Tom Costello 2, New Orleans 2, Pentagon 2, Brian Williams 2, Michigan 2, Chris Jansing 2, Adairsville 2, Scott Budman 1
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